It's a new year. Welcome to 2019. What does a new year mean to Slap?
For me personally, I get on the goal setting bandwagon. I know, how cliche'. I've been involved in some discussions with other small business owners and creatives that feel the new year is just hype and you should always be setting goals and regrouping on the regular. I concur, it is good practice to be always self evaluating - however - I like to have a hard date to really evaluate what is going on. What works for me is the beginning of tax season. I'm already looking back at last years finances, it's good to align my goals and what I think I'll be spending on and budgeting for at the start of the new year. This is a time for me to assess what worked last year, what fell short, how can we improve and where do we desire to be this year, what are some things we want to accomplish. Again, cliche' but it's good to testify your experience - even if it is just to yourself.
Here are two of our personal 2018 milestones that I think will help to shape 2019:
Ben finally built his work bench - wrapping it up at the start of 2019 and already enjoying the reward of having a clean workshop and space to work. It has inspired him tremendously to have this project completed and he's been busier than I've ever seen him as a result. Too often we get caught up in what everyone else is asking for that it's hard to do some housekeeping or updating. The end of last year was super busy for our pottery portion of our business but slow for the woodworking. This meant Ben could focus on tidying up and doing some much needed work in his shop for his shop. It was a goal that had nagged him for years and the build out is amazing. He used all of his woodworking skills and it is a beautiful testament to his growth as a craftsman.
I made my first teapot at the end of 2018. I know it doesn't sound like much of an achievement but it was a goal that I had set for myself to start trying last year and didn't expect I'd achieve it until later this year. However, my best friend was in town and asked me to try while she was there. So I threw the spout, the body, and the lid. I pulled the handle and then I waited for them to dry a bit. I assembled the pieces and a few weeks later I fired it - and guess what...it pours so nice and is a great 2 cup pot. I'm gifting it to my best friend when I see her next. The reason this was such a huge thing for me is that it required so many steps and everything has to fit well. The positioning of the spout is tricky to get a good pour, the size of the lid has to fit snug in the body so it doesn't fall off when you are pouring. You sometimes need a little bit of a push to do things that you were hesitant to do for lack of confidence.
Here are two goals for Slap for 2019 - I'm gonna put it in writing so I can revisit this post later:
I want to participate in two vendor events with my work and possibly sell work in a shop.
Ben wants to learn leather working. He was commissioned for a project by a friend that he is excited to do that is start to finish leather work.
Here are the things we will definitely be doing in 2019:
I'm heading to Maker's Central in May and am over the moon excited to see all of my UK pals. I have several pottery projects that are in the works and will be finally finishing my Izzy Swan mega mug. Ben is adding to his portfolio with leather working and will be creating a lot more pieces to come. He also is planning on continuing his wave of shop improvements by building me a slab table! I'm learning how to use Sales Force as a tool for our small business and am hoping to parlay that into a possible new career direction. It's out of my wheelhouse, but I'm so excited to be learning the tools to improve our little small business and hopefully help others along the way.
Cheers to the old year and into the new. Thanks everyone so much for being a part of our little maker journey. If you have any ideas for what we should try this coming year, or tools we can add to our studio, hit us up on insta- facebook- youtube or email us. I'm always looking for ways to grow.
******************* end of communication************** proceeding with personal milestone notes to reflect on
Last year we didn't move any mountains, but we did hit some milestones. For my own therapy I want to walk through some of them:
- Ben made a purple acorn box, his first segmented wood project
- I started my nerd mugs project
- I participated in the Sticker Challenge hosted by Brett and Laura
- My kiln had a melt down
- Ben fixed my kiln for me
- Ben made my valentines day purple heart guitar hanger
- we bought a 3D printer
- We went to our first forge visit with Tim @ the urban forge
- We met some great folks at the Lincoln event in Cleveland and I handed out my nerd mugs
- Ben made gun grips for the first time using stabilized blanks
- I went to NCECA for the first time
- Ben made his tumble-down Garth sign
- We did our first collaboration mug together
- I 3D printed a lot of nerdy things (helmets, dickbutt, sonic screwdrivers, logos, weapons, Groots)
- I made my first pottery sale!
- I tried a new clay body
- Ben made more bandsaw boxes
- We cleaned out the garage to be able to use it as a workshop space
- Ben set up the lathe
- I turned my first bowl
- Ben turned his first tool handle
- Ben made a mallet out of purple heart
- I photographed several weddings
- Jake and I started a podcast called Origin Point
- Ben made a zelda card box
- Ben made an elephant box for Tanda
- We went to Upstate NY and played on a slip and slide and hugged some wonderful people
- I started my Izzy mug project
- Carver saw the ocean for the first time
- We were on Fools With Tools Podcast
- We were spiffed twice on FWT
- Carver threw his first bowl
- Ben and I made a cowboy mug
- I had lots and lots of maker mug commissions
- We had our first blacksmithing experience
- Ben gave his first public speech at his best bud's wedding
- Ben made hand carved wooden scoops
- I threw lots and lots of pots
- Ben made a Desmond sign
- We had our first slap stuff together weekend
- Ben made letters for the craft nook
- I made my first sculpted mug
- Ben made his first lid for one of my pots
- I made a platter and luminaries
- Carver turned 2
- We had a surprise part for Ben's 40th birthday a month late :D
- We had so much fun and we loved it
Small Business owner and Artist, committed to growing as a maker as well as sharing her and her husband's experience with owning a small maker studio.
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